in today’s world, when we experience an event, most of the time we do so in a very public way. we are quick on sharing our pictures, the songs that we like, the videos we have discovered on youtube. we visit a coffee shop and we “check in”. the 2.0 ritual. art is starting to do the same.
there is an obvious exhibitionist power in art, because art is made for display. a painting is only realised when it is viewed. a novel is only realised when it is read. and so on. but, when conceptual art seeks the public space, it sometimes gets lost. when an idea is the main commodity art has to deliver, and this idea is the personal point of view of the artist on a subject, then, i believe, the message can get lost by the public display.
art has become referential. the art industry works by creating meaningful objects that people can relate to. we use contemporary art as a mirror. to contemplate in ourselves the struggles of the gender war, or the social and economic differences, or a quest for love. so that we can say: “i do too feel like that sometimes”. “that does look like a reflection of what i once felt”.
we have created a chain of effects, of transferred ideas, a way of internalising ideas based upon interpretations of someone else’s discourses, or, even worse, interpretations of someone else’s interpretations of someone else’s discourses. we think of pop songs that way. we appropriate their meaning, even when they are only aesthetic artefacts that actually do not mean anything, since they have been created using generic formulas to appeal to a vast majority.
we share everything everywhere, in a referential game, a game that includes a bottom section full of hastags that link us to one another, and we have stopped feeling in isolation, experiencing art, life, in a way that is just personal.
art, in its quest for meaning and relevance, has completely corrupted the meaning of meaning. meaning is now a commodity, something that can be measured, and we judge things by the amount of meaning they provide. high brow is just a referential game based upon the fallacy of culture, a compilation of the highest number of references to back up the actual emptiness of the idea.
we interact with each other the way we are taught by films and books. we fall in love with fiction as our background. we analyse reality with fiction, looking for reality within fiction, and fiction within reality. when experiencing something, we say “this feels like a movie”. when we see a film, we say “this feels like my life”. we look for an ideal that does not exist, and we go back an forth between what we feel and the way we are taught we are supposed to feel. the listeners of a pop song will use it as a vehicle to redirect their lives, they will adopt the meaning of the song as personal, moulding reality with fiction.
we are all being levelled up to the same, machines unable to generate genuine feelings, just mere translators and adaptors of someone else’s message, a message created for us from pieces of reality that together create a beautiful fallacy of normalcy, of love, of growing up, of sex. of art.